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Welcome to 2013!

Bridge

2013 rolls around, and looking at my blog I couldn’t leave a Christmas tree picture as the last post as it’s the last thing anyone wants to see during the bleakness of January! So I needed a new year post!!  Having time off work has been good to spend some time practising, messing around with a few new gadgets (gear page updated soon!), and generally eating and drinking too much.  To help me get used to the user interface of the Zoom R16, I quickly recorded these two short pieces.  Test 2 is me practicing “soloing” over a few chords, so is a bit sloppy, but it’s being uploaded anyway! Victoria also bought me some headphones for Christmas (Shure HD215) so it’s been good to play piano and listen to mixes through some better quality phones!

Test 1

Test 2

Listening back to the pieces I’ve uploaded since I started this blog in June last year, I can hear a definite quality difference in the recording and composition, often because some pieces i’ve uploaded i’ve spent far more time on as they have several instruments or sections, whereas others have been just a quick idea without too much behind them.  For the New Year, I’m going to pull out the pieces i believe are “more complete” to hopefully pull together a selection of songs, and dare i say the word solo EP!

On new ideas, I have the beginnings of Tentacle 6 whirring around and I’d also like to record a few more piano lesson pieces sometime soon.

Resolutions? None…. Just keep practicing, playing, recording, messing about and inevitably buy different gear!

Here’s to a good year to everyone!

Studio2

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Time for a Christmas song……

Christmas eve, been rapping all morning (along to the Executioners course), and done a bit of wrapping as well.  I thought it appropriate to upload a bit of a Christmas song,  but of course Bucket of Tentacles style.  You’re welcome to sing along for the first half and then MC along for the second!!

Christmas-Tree-WP

(Christmas tree decorations undertaken by VT)

Happy Christmas!

The tech specs:  Despite me promising never to buy any more gear, this track was recorded on a new Zoom R16.  Its looking like my old cymbals are going up for sale though to fund…….  The Zoom is a 16 track portable recorder, which can do 8 tracks simultaneously.  All tracks can be “mixed on the box” which is fantastic, or you can dump the audio direct into a DAW.  In this case, Cubase LE6 (light version of Cubase) that came with the Zoom.  So its all been a bit of a new experiment really to get me used to the new gear and software.  Just a note on the drums, I tried to find a “junglist” pattern in 3/4 but unsurprisingly haven’t got one, so banged this one out (on the keyboard) at half speed and sped it up – the wonders of modern technology eh?!  The main use of the Zoom will be to record the acoustic band i’m in (Lowdown) simply and quickly live.  But then have the audio on separate tracks just to get a better mix, so hopefully we’ll record an EP soon!